The Phoenix Super LPG Fuelmasters is scheduled for a head-to-head game against the Terrafirma Dyip at 4:30 PM on February 18, 2023 live from the Smart Araneta Coliseum at Quezon City, Metro Manila.
The Dyip will try to avoid a three-game losing skid instead getting a win in order for them to chase the 8th spot of the standings while the Fuelmasters wanted a similar outcome especially now that they are struggling at a 1-5 record.
Terrafirma and Phoenix Super LPG are well aware of their recent struggles, but they are determined to take advantage of their limited opportunity in the PBA Governors Cup before it closes. The Dyip and Fuel Masters will face each other at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Saturday with the intention of widening their opening just a bit more.
A win by either 2-3 Terrafirma or 1-5 Phoenix is critical, as it will keep their respective playoff hopes alive and allow them to compete among the eight teams. Given the stakes, expect a fierce and intense battle where both teams leave nothing on the table.
Terrafirma found themselves in a tough spot after a crushing defeat from powerhouse TNT, followed by a loss to Rain or Shine, who played without an import. Although they caught up in the end, they could not stop the Elasto Painters from escaping with a 120-118 victory.
Coach Johnedel Cardel admitted that his players failed to match Rain or Shine’s aggression. “Siyempre they (E-Painters) came out aggressive at hindi namin na-match iyon,” he said. Now, the Dyip must pick themselves up and prepare for Phoenix’s anticipated hardline stance. “Nagtatalo rin iyan kaya hindi bibigay sa amin iyan,” stated Cardel.
Phoenix’s sense of urgency is also heightened following their two-game slide, but they have had more time to regroup after their defeat to Magnolia. The Fuel Masters’ chances depend not only on Jason Perkins and Tyler Tio’s offense but also on Du’vaughnn Maxwell’s performance.
Maxwell scored only 11 points and 10 rebounds against the Hotshots, committed seven turnovers and struggled with defense. He will face a severe test against Terrafirma’s Jordan Williams, who scored 30 points and grabbed 16 rebounds against Rain or Shine, although he took some time before finding his rhythm.